Press release of independent Serbian organizations advocating for prenatal justice concerning the leaked draft decision of the US Supreme Court on the constitutionality of the right to abortion
Although unofficial, the draft of the US Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which was leaked last week, represents one of the most significant events in the field of prenatal human rights in the last fifty years. The preliminary draft unequivocally establishes that the US Constitution does not provide for the right to abortion, which means that this issue should be left to the jurisdiction of individual US states.
We share the concerns of a large part of the American expert public regarding the leaked draft, since this compromises the regularity of the legal process and places a lot of pressure on the Supreme Court justices. However, as organizations that support women in unplanned pregnancies and advocate for prenatal justice, this preliminary analysis also fills us with hope that social dialogue on these issues around the world, including in Serbia, will now be much broader in scope and based on scientific, legal and bioethical facts.
It is our deeply held belief that women’s and human rights are not in conflict with the human rights of the unborn child. Most countries in the world recognize at least two relevant parties in the event of an intentional termination of pregnancy, and international legal frameworks allow states a great deal of freedom to strike a balance between these two. The preliminary, unofficial opinion of the US Supreme Court clearly testifies to that and is based thereon. We note that the US is also a signatory to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and we are certain that the Supreme Court justices are well aware of the Covenant’s framework.
We also feel that it is important to emphasize that there is no consensus in American society about the issues of prenatal rights. Specifically, almost half of American women support the prenatal right to life. Six out of ten American citizens support setting the limit for elective abortion at week 12 of pregnancy – which is effectively in opposition to the famous, and now unofficially disputed decisions Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey.
We are delighted with the reactions of US pro-life organizations and numerous proponents of prenatal justice, who almost unanimously focused on supporting women and families as soon as the draft was leaked, both in practice, in real life, and within the legal framework, advocating for more efficient economic, health and legal assistance. Accordingly, our local efforts in the future will remain focused on establishing a network of support for women in crisis pregnancies and their families, as well as encouraging a positive, evidence-based dialogue on prenatal justice.
The signatories are independent, non-governmental and non-profit associations of citizens that advocate for prenatal human rights, protection of women’s reproductive health and social dialogue on these issues.